Skip to comments.William Jefferson D-La tries to get case thrown out (no "official act" for bribe)
Posted on 11/13/2007 2:56:23 PM PST by Libloather
Jefferson tries to get case thrown out
By: John Bresnahan
Nov 12, 2007 07:35 PM EST
Jefferson has been indicted on a litany of federal charges, including bribery. Photo: AP
Who says lawyers arent creative? Attorneys for indicted Rep. William Jefferson (D-La.) are citing new Senate legislation designed to make it easier to prosecute corrupt pols as a reason to throw out parts of the bribery and corruption case against the lawmaker.
Jefferson has been indicted on a litany of federal charges, including bribery, in the U.S. District Court in Alexandria, Va. His trial is set to start in mid-January, but Jeffersons legal team has been seeking to have all or part of the case dismissed. A federal judge has yet to rule on Jeffersons motions.
In two supplemental memos submitted to the court on Friday, Jeffersons lawyers argue that changes to federal law outlined in the Public Corruption Prosecution Improvements Act (S. 1976), which was recently approved by the Senate Judiciary Committee, actually buttress their case.
For instance, Jeffersons attorneys have claimed that in charging Jefferson with bribery, the government failed to adequately define what official act he is alleged to have engaged in in return for money. Since the new Senate bill expands the definition of official act, Jeffersons lawyers assert that this would not be necessary if the current law were adequate and fit his case.
Obviously, the amendment adding language covering any action within the range of official duty would be unnecessary if such actions were already covered by the definition, the attorneys wrote in one memo.
In the other memo, Jeffersons lawyers, from the firm Trout Cacheris, point out that further provisions in the new legislation allow prosecutors to choose where they bring a case, sometimes referred to in legal circles as venue shopping. Jefferson has claimed that the Justice Department sought to indict him in Alexandria in order to keep African-Americans off the federal jury that would hear his case. Federal prosecutors vehemently deny the claim, saying that since some of the activities allegedly committed by Jefferson would have taken place in the Old Commonwealth, he can properly be charged there.
However, since the pending Senate bill deals with this issue of forum selection, amending the current law to allow prosecutors to charge an official in any district in which an act in furtherance of the offense is committed, this once again appears to Jeffersons side to demonstrate a problem with the case against him.
This legislative effort reinforces Mr. Jeffersons position that as the law currently stands, venue for a bribery count lies only in the district in which the essential conduct elements took place. If it were otherwise, there would be no need to alter the criminal code as currently proposed, Jeffersons lawyers wrote, meaning he should have been charged in Washington, since his service in Congress takes place there. Since he was not, they suggested, one of the bribery counts should be dropped by District Judge T.S. Ellis III.
The Justice Department had no comment on Jeffersons latest filing at press time.
Laws written by lawyers for lawyers with lawyers...
Love how the MSM leaves this guy alone but Bernard Kerik(sp) is open season.
No controlling legal authority?
Dittos to that...
The MSM is only interested in defeating Republicans (except favorite RINOS). Truth, justice and the American way has got to go! These weasels wil do anything to beat us down.
Do lawyers have their own flag? I’m thinking an eel with “don’t slip on me” might make the point.
It depends on the meaning of the word “scumbag”.
sounds like al the bore gore
So, who is this idiot’s attorney: Al “No controlling legal authority” Gore?
Bribery just ain't what it used to be...
Gore and the Monks
For the Times to draw a parallel between George W. Bush's legal fund-raising and Al Gore's Buddhist temple fiasco is just breathtaking. At the Buddhist temple event, a non-profit organization illegally funneled at least $65,000 to the DNC through straw donors -- the monks -- who were reimbursed with temple funds for their political contributions . Two of the "donors" were foreign nationals, and the event was orchestrated by a woman, Maria Hsia, who a Senate committee found has acted as an agent of the Chinese communist government and who has since been convicted of felonies stemming from the fundraising scandal. As detailed in a report of the Senate committee on governmental affairs, the Buddhist temple activity "clearly violated federal election laws barring political contributions made through 'straw donors' and meets the legal definition of a 'criminal conspiracy.'" In addition, federal law, 2 U.S.C. Sec. 441e(1), prohibits foreign nationals from contributing to American political campaigns. What the Buddhist temple event was about was not simply "awkward pictures" and the definition of a fund-raiser, but serious violations of federal law. There is no evidence that Mr. Bush has engaged in this sort of behavior. And there is no reason to believe that Mr. Gore and his campaign would pay any more attention to the rules after the passage of campaign finance "reform." If Mr. Gore's campaign didn't obey the existing laws the last time around, why should we trust him to write new laws or to obey them once they are passed?
How about that... I guess it depends what your definition of is is...
He’s trying to push his case anywhere and everywhere until he finds a bubba klintoon appointed judge that lets him go.
When is this turd calling Denny Hastert as a character witness?